Adam Void, Graffiti, a Decade, and 1000 Polaroids

“This is why we can’t have pretty things.” That’s the thought that runs through your head walking through your average punk rock squat, with all its scattered art installations (including on the ceiling), hand made concert posters, curious clumps of clothes on the floor, a cigarette butt smashed into a beer cap on the windowsill, left over signs of impromptu all-nighters, ever shifting sleeping arrangements, and one creaky cracked bottom refrigerator drawer that is stuck and nobody can open it and probably they shouldn’t.

Adam Void probably has a poloroid of that. In fact during his 20s he spent lots of time ambling between his home state of North Carolina and points west and north, hopping freight trains, hitch hiking, sleeping in briar patches, pissing downhill, investigating the underside and inside and backside and countryside and cityside – and happily documenting with a poloroid camera that now feels as outdated as a cassette tape.

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An installation by Judith Supine shot by Adam Void (Polaroid photo © Adam Void)

Hard to comprehend in the age of everybody-everywhere-everyminute cell phones, but a bad shot in this case is deleted by physically placing it in an actual garbage can. However Mr Void probably kept it anyway, such a fan of the blurry and splattered and textural is he. Cool thing is, you don’t have to apply a “poloroid” filter to the image.

The expanse of 1000+ shots he collected over eleven years is a good diary of liberty in the 2000s at a time when the hysteria of war had mind-locked the middle; polarizing and frightening and deliberately muddling the perceptions of the everyday. While people were alertly seeing things and saying things and buying duct tape, Void was blithely walking through their back yard taking shots and committing them to imperfectly perfect film.

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UFO by Adam Void (Polaroid photo © Adam Void)

It’s also a visual diary of a young man looking at the detritus, flipping things over and inspecting the belly, testing the limits, and reveling in the process of discovery. “These photographs serve as documents of the beginnings of the Carolina’s graffiti scene, 2006-10 era Brooklyn Street Art/Weirdo Graffiti underground, Baltimore and Philly’s warehouse squat culture of the early 2010’s, and hundreds of pictures from America’s back roads,” says Mr. Void.

Today he shares with BSA readers a handful of favorites and a couple of shots of his new installation of 800 in Asheville, NC entitled “Adam Void / Instant Photography: 2003-2014”

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Faile by Adam Void (Polaroid photo © Adam Void)

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Adam Void / Instant Photography: 2003-2014 ( photo © Castell Photography)

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Adam Void / Instant Photography: 2003-2014 ( photo © Castell Photography)

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Adam Void / Instant Photography: 2003-2014 ( photo © Castell Photography)

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Adam Void / Instant Photography: 2003-2014 ( photo © Castell Photography)

 

“Adam Void / Instant Photography: 2003-2014” is currently open to the general public at Castell Photography located at 2C Wilson Alley in Asheville, NC.

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